Nothing Lost, Plenty Gained

Technological benefits retained through instrument power upgrade.

Photo by Nerissa Johnson.

Bruce has devoted most of his life to serving his country.

To this day, 80-year-old Bruce Card still worries that he may not have done enough to serve his country. This despite the fact that he did stints in the
US Air Force, the US Army Reserve and the US Coast Guard Auxiliary.

“I really wish I could have done more, especially when I was in the Air Force,” says Bruce, who served four years in that branch, from 1958-62, as a member of its security force. “I sometimes feel a little guilty that maybe I didn’t do enough.”

Bruce has no reason to feel guilty. He immediately followed up his four years in the Air Force with a brief, two-year tour of duty in the Army Reserve. Then, shortly after turning 60, he began a 15-year stint with the Coast Guard Auxiliary.

“That’s what I enjoyed the most,” says Bruce. “I really enjoyed being out on the water and running patrols during events like the Super Bowl in Jacksonville and the G8 Summit in Sea Island, Georgia.

“We even rode down to Cape Canaveral a few times to set up parameters for shuttle launches to make sure the boats didn’t get too close. It was a lot of fun, and I don’t regret a day of it. I’d go back in today if they’d take me.”

Bruce’s military contributions all came while he battled a hearing loss issue he’s wrestled with since he was a teenager. He says he’s never been sure of what it was that caused the hearing loss, only that he has long needed hearing aids to correct it.

“Melanee is one of those people who go the extra mile for you, and I appreciate that. I recommend her and Miracle-Ear in a heartbeat to anyone.” – Bruce

“All I know is that I had two operations on both my ears to fix the problem but to no avail,” Bruce says. “It really became an issue for me when I was in the Air Force, and I’ve been wearing hearing aids ever since.

“I’ve had hearing aids from several different companies over the years, and to be honest with you, I always got disillusioned with them. For whatever reason, it just seemed as if the people that were working with me weren’t all that interested.”

Bruce’s growing frustration prompted a search about six years ago for yet another new provider of hearing aids. This time, on the recommendation of his wife, he decided to visit Miracle-Ear®. That’s where he met Melanee Bryans, LHAS.

“Melanee is very nice. What I like about her the most is that she’s very straightforward, up front and accommodating,” Bruce says. “She really cares a lot about helping people, which I like a lot.”

Upgrade for a Decline

Photo by Nerissa Johnson.Melanee has been performing annual evaluations of Bruce’s hearing since he first arrived at Miracle-Ear, and as part of her routine, she always suggests upgrades based on her findings. In Bruce’s case, that has proved critical.

“Every time that I’ve tested Bruce, I’ve noticed a decline in his hearing,” Melanee says. “When that happens, you can make adjustments to the hearing aids someone is wearing, but eventually, you just cap out on the power that the hearing aid is able to give.

“That’s what happened with Bruce just recently. He was in a very discreet pair of hearing aids with all the new technological bells and whistles, but he reached the threshold of those hearing aids and had to graduate to a more
powerful model.”

The hearing aids Bruce wore before his most recent visit to Miracle-Ear were receiver-in-canal models that include a small wire that goes into the ear canal. For Bruce, a custom ear mold was added.

Bruce’s new, more powerful hearing aids fit snugly behind his ear just like his last pair did and include newer technological advances.

“Just because you need more power in a hearing aid doesn’t mean you have to give up all that new-age technology,” Melanee emphasizes. “We’re still able to give him the direct streaming feature, which he loves.”

The direct streaming feature allows the wearer to hear sounds generated by an external electronic source such as a TV set, radio or smart telephone directly through the hearing device, which makes for a much clearer, cleaner sound.

“Better Than Ever”

“With direct streaming, you’re not losing any of the sounds you’re trying to focus on because of all the ambient noise around you,” Melanee explains. “That’s a feature that is proving to be very popular, especially with people who watch a lot of TV.

“For example, if you’re sitting at home watching television with your spouse, by streaming the TV directly into the hearing aid, you can hear the TV clearly while your spouse can enjoy it as well but at a level that is comfortable for them.

“Another great feature of these hearing aids is that they allow the wearer to block out ambient noises and concentrate just on the people he or she wants to hear when they’re in a crowded environment like a restaurant.

“That’s a great feature for Bruce because he and his wife take a lot of road trips, and when he’s driving, he can adjust his hearing aids so that he can concentrate solely on his wife, which allows them to carry on a conversation he can understand.”

Though he once worked in the computer industry, Bruce says he’s amazed by the technology available in his new hearing aids. He adds that he’s hearing “better than ever” with them and emphasizes it’s the people that keep him coming back to Miracle-Ear.

“Melanee even came out to our house a couple of times to help me with a problem that I was having,” he says. “She’s one of those people who goes the extra mile for you, and I appreciate that. I recommend her and Miracle-Ear in a heartbeat to anyone.”

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